Antonio Gates Fantasy News
Kyle Rudolph (foot) running since mid-February
Tuesday, April 15, 2014, 11:06am
Kyle Rudolph said he's had no foot problems, has been running since mid-Feb.
Rudolph was the #13 TE through Week 9 prior to a season-ending fracture in his foot. He was 15th in targets per game during that span, so there’s some opportunity in the workload department, especially with new OC Norv Turner in town. Turner isn’t necessarily as TE-friendly as his old boss Rob Chudzinski, but he featured Antonio Gates and Jordan Cameron heavily while with the Chargers and Browns.
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Jordan Reed could be 'matchup nightmare' for defenses
Thursday, April 10, 2014, 11:40am
Gil Brandt of NFL.com likes what Redskins TE Jordan Reed brings to the table: "Reed burst onto the scene relatively late in 2013, catching nine passes for 134 yards and a touchdown against the Bears in Week 7, and he started just four games before a concussion ended his debut season six games early. But in that brief window, he showed he could be a matchup nightmare for opposing defenses, what with his speed and hands. The former third-round pick looks like a receiver, someone who can catch balls and move the chains -- he reminds me of a young Antonio Gates, though not quite as big. The Florida product is pretty slick and has definite Pro Bowl potential. He had three plays of 20 yards or more, which is pretty good for a tight end, and just three drops in 59 targets."
Reed was on pace for 80-887-5.3 (#7 TE-type numbers) prior to his injury, but didn't even crack the 50% snaps played mark until Week 6. In the five games where he played at least 50% of his team's snaps, he averaged 6.2-76-.40 or #3 TE-type numbers. The main concern with Reed is his injury history, specifically with concussions. According to NBC Washington, Reed suffered two concussions while at Florida. If he can stay healthy, he's a likely top 5 fantasy TE, but that's no sure thing.
Whisenhunt: Delanie Walker 'similar' to Antonio Gates
Thursday, January 23, 2014, 2:16pm
The official announcement of Mike Mularkey’s hiring as tight ends coach on Wednesday meant the Titans now have three coaches with plenty of experience coaching the position. Head coach Ken Whisenhunt and offensive coordinator Jason Michael are former tight ends coaches.
The three have a combined 14 years of coaching tight ends, with Whisenhunt and Mularkey adding a combined 17 years of NFL playing experience at the position.
“I had a lot of respect for him there, so needless to say I’m excited that he’s on this team and I’ll have a chance to work with him,” Whisenhunt said. “Working with Antonio Gates got me excited about the position, and I think there’s a lot of elements to what Delanie does that are similar in that capacity.”
The comparison seems like a stretch, but Walker did finish as the #12 TE in 2013 and had a run from Week 10 to Week 15 where he was the #6 TE. Walker won't be posting Gates-in-his-prime numbers in 2014, but it's good to hear that his HC values his play. He'll be a sleeper heading into this summer's fantasy drafts.
Saturday, November 30, 2013, 2:13pm
Antonio Gates missed five of 72 offensive snaps Sunday.
The way his hamstring felt, it could have been more.
The Chargers tight end was back on the field Friday, present at an all-important practice after missing the previous two days. He was a full participant and is listed as probable to face the Bengals on Sunday, but the hamstring ailment is not a small, sweep-under-the-rug matter.
Hamstring injuries never are.
"It's tricky," Gates said Friday. "It's different. It's one of those injuries where you can't fully grasp whether or not you can do something because it's all running. Everything is based off running and power and holding off people on blocks, and the hamstring is a big part of that. Without the lower body, you couldn't play in this league. I'll see how it goes. I'm going to attack this rehab. I've got two more days. That's the best part about it.
Gates said if he had to play Friday, he wasn't sure he would have been able to go. But a couple more days will definitely help Gates leading up to Sunday's game. If he can't go, emerging star Ladarius Green would likely get a major bump up our TE rankings.
Monday, November 18, 2013, 8:34pm
At 6-6, 240-pounds, he’s quickly making his presence felt with big play after big play. After appearing in only four games as a rookie, Green is blossoming before the Bolts very eyes. In 10 games this year, he has caught 11 balls for 229 yards, averaging a gaudy 20.8 yards per catch. His best game came Sunday against the Dolphins with an impressive four reception, 81-yard effort. Both were career highs for the Louisiana-Lafayette product.
Over the course of the season, Philip Rivers has learned that when he gives number 89 a chance to make a play, he’ll usually be rewarded.
“It was just some of the way those plays came up,” Rivers said. “We know what he’s capable of and he’s going to continue to have a role for us in the passing game and in the running game. He was big for us with a couple of big catches.”
Danario Alexander tears ACL
Tuesday, August 6, 2013, 7:39pm
Alexander, who tore his left ACL three times in college at Missouri, has had a history of knee problem.
Alexander emerged as a very good fantasy player last season, catching 37 passes for 658 yards and seven touchdowns in 10 games overall. Over that span he posted #6 WR numbers, and this year we had him ranked as a solid WR3. Vincent Brown and Malcom Floyd will both get a bump in value, but even Brown just recently returned to practice. Also, the Bolts are supposed to simplify things this year, running more with Ryan Mathews, Danny Woodhead and Ronnie Brown, and getting the ball quicker out of QB Philip Rivers' hand. We have Keenan Allen next up on the depth chart followed by Eddie Royal and Robert Meachem, who were both very disappointing last season. At TE, Antonio Gates figures to see a few more targets as well. This is a big blow to Philip Rivers.
Antonio Gates in better shape
Monday, August 5, 2013, 11:08am
Antonio Gates is gluten-free and ticked off.
The greats have to keep finding new things to stoke the greatness, and so Gates grips his incentive in arms forged of a new resolve.
Gates has lost weight, even gotten leaner before, but he has always tended toward Pillsbury Dough Boy more than Man of Steel.
Now, a veteran of multiple serious foot injuries, far closer to the end of his career than the beginning and a little bit freaked out by that rapidly approaching mortality, he has eliminated wheat (and some other things) from his diet. Never before in a career going on 11 years has there been this definition, this sinew throughout his 255 pounds.
The story acknowledges that we heard similar things from Gates in previous seasons. While he seems to be keeping his weight off, his stock is still down from where we all once remember it. We rank him at 14th, with an ADP of the 12th round. The Chargers O-line still looks pretty bad, but the plan is to keep things simple: run more and get the ball out of Philip Rivers' hand quicker. He's only a TE2 option right now and there are better directions to go in until we see more. But someone will likely scoop him up based on name alone.
Saturday, July 27, 2013, 10:17am
Multiple coaches and teammates said in the spring they were taken aback by the rate at which Chargers QB Philip Rivers learned the new offense. There have been practices where he’s thrown more underneath passes than he can remember, and that added balance will be beneficial, he said, because it should allow for more third-and-manageable situations.
After four consecutive top 10 seasons, Rivers fell to 20th in total fantasy points and 22nd in PPG. This can be partly attributed to the departure of Vincent Jackson and the fact that Antonio Gates simply isn't a dominant tight end anymore. Rivers is not an elite QB who can overcome a talent drop off, but he is capable enough to post good-to-great numbers if he's surrounded by good players. There are concerns that all of this underneath throwing will negatively impact Danario Alexander, but the team would be foolish to ignore the chemistry and success that the Rivers/Alexander duo had last season.
Saturday, July 6, 2013, 9:59pm
What separates good tight ends from great tight ends is making the tough catch and the ability to stretch a defense and make big plays. While Vikings TE Kyle Rudolph and QB Christian Ponder have yet to develop a deep downfield rapport, Rudolph has become Ponder’s security blanket in the red zone – the area of the field inside the opponent’s 20-yard line.
In two seasons, Vikings quarterbacks have thrown to Rudolph 23 times in the red zone. He has caught 20 of them – a whopping 87 percent of those throws. They weren’t always accurate. They weren’t always easy. But he made them.
For the purpose of comparison, in that same span, Antonio Gates has caught 67 percent of red zone passes thrown his way. Rob Gronkowski has caught 65 percent. Tony Gonzalez has caught 63 percent. Heath Miller has caught 60 percent. Jimmy Graham has caught 53 percent.
Rudolph hasn't had enough non-red zone opportunities to be ranked among the league's elite TEs, though he certainly has upside in 2013.
Weeden: Jordan Cameron "is going to be a great player"
Saturday, July 6, 2013, 7:16am
“Jordan is one of the most athletic big guys I’ve ever been around in any sport. He’s extremely talented. He’s still learning the game essentially; he’s a basketball player that has all of the athletic ability in the world and has great hands, great route runner. He creates mismatches; that’s what I tell people. You put a corner or you put a safety on Jordan, it’s a mismatch and that’s what we like to do offensively. I’m excited for Jordan, he’s going to be a great player for us. This offense [under Norv Turner] fits him extremely well, obviously seeing what they did with Antonio Gates in San Diego. It’s got to be exciting for him and I know it’s exciting for me to throw it to a guy like that because he has big-play capability and I’m excited to see what kind of year he has.”
Senior Editor John Paulsen recently watched all of Cameron's 2012 targets and came away impressed, issuing a Sleeper Alert for the young tight end.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013, 10:10am
Gates can be had in the later rounds this season. He was relatively healthy last season and finished as the #12 TE thanks to seven TD catches.
Saturday, June 8, 2013, 10:44am
Chargers QB Philip Rivers, 31, seems determined to show he can be a better version of the quarterback that once led the NFL in passing yards (2010) and touchdowns (2008), and not the one who threw 25 interceptions, lost 12 fumbles and was sacked 79 times in the past two seasons.
He told USA TODAY Sports he has been reinvigorated by the new offense of head coach Mike McCoy and offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt.
"I think my best football is ahead of me, I really do," Rivers said. "That's being optimistic, because we've had a lot of really good years. I am probably on the second half of my career, the back end, but I think I've got a lot of good football left.
After four consecutive top 10 seasons, Rivers fell to 20th in total fantasy points and 22nd in PPG. This can be partly attributed to the departure of Vincent Jackson and the fact that Antonio Gates simply isn't a dominant tight end anymore. Rivers is not an elite QB who can overcome a talent drop off, but he is capable enough to post good-to-great numbers if he's surrounded by good players. Hiring former Denver OC Mike McCoy and re-signing Danario Alexander should help. Of the QBs available in the later rounds, he has quite a bit of upside.